tv Charlie Rose Bloomberg February 6, 2015 10:00pm-11:01pm EST
it shows militants burning a jordanian pilot alive. king abdullah of jordan returned home wednesday for crisis talks. authorities in jordan released -- executed two convicts in response. they also promised a military response. kenneth pollack is a senior fellow at the brookings institution. let me begin with this question. name almost any outrage in the middle east. iraq's invasion of kuwait. the gassing of kurds. the bombing of the uss cole.
the protagonists would find both apologists and detractors. but with one breathtakingly vicious murder, the islamic state changed that dynamic. i want you to give me a sense of that dynamic. ken? >> the arab world, especially the sunni arab world, has been ambivalent about the fight against isis. they don't like isis and see it as a threat. they see another threat, in many ways a bigger threat. the shia forces led by iran. the american-led effort against isis has suffered because sunni states are not willing to participate as much as the u.s. would like. what may have happened as a result of the killing of this pilot is we may now see the
sunni states coming fully on board. saying, as much as we don't like the shia, isis clearly has got to be dealt with. we will see more full throated and enthusiastic support for the effort against isis. >> this shifts the center of gravity for the coalition. it makes it a regional fight. one of the reasons there have been detractors is it has been seen as an american-led effort. now this has hit at home and is galvanizing the arab street. the second dimension ideological. important statements from islamic centers saying this is forbidden.
>> what might they do? >> jordan is talking about an air campaign. there are other elements. the psychological and political dimensions. even cultural. what we have seen is the populations in syria and iraq, in many cases, they do not like isis. but they dislike the shia governments that were oppressing them even more than isis. as a result, you did not see a lot of resistance. we always suspected there were some degree of support coming from many of the sunni states of the region. in a variety of indirect ways, whether it was allowing foreign
fighters to come in or smuggling oil and money and goods out to sustain them financially. we can hope and have reason to expect we will see a lot of that shut down. we will not see the flow of foreign fighters. a lot of these factors will start to erode whatever support isis once had. >> robert? >> the most important plan right now is on the psychological and ideological side. on the military side, nothing will change other than the intensification. we have a problem with no ground forces being able to take them on in syria. none mobilized in iraq, or sunni tribes not mobilized to take on isis. for the hearts and minds of the arab world, where the battle is
being fought, here there was an opportunity to turn the tide against isis. i would caution against concluding they have been defeated ideologically. the film they put out with the pilot being burned came after they showed a lot of bombing from the airstrikes of the coalition. they were arguing the coalition had been burning arabs with bombs and airplanes. that is why they were doing this to the pilot. while this has caused justifiable revulsion, it could mobilize some recruits. >> how successful have the airstrikes been? >> i was in iraq a couple of weeks ago. you get a strong sense that these airstrikes are having an impact on isis.
the proof of all of that lies in what we are seeing on the map. syria is a different story. but in iraq, the offensive has been halted. baghdad is no longer threatened. you have had iraqi and kurdish forces pushing back on isis. now encroaching on mosul in greater numbers. isis made some small gains in anbar, but they were modest. it is the combination of the air campaign, but of iraqi forces operating on the ground. the iraqi forces on the ground are not necessarily the forces we would like.
they are shia militias with very close ties to iran. many of them seem to be engaged in nefarious activities of their own. lots of reports of ethnic cleansing going on as they push isis out. >> there is talk that they ought to not focus on assad in the syrian civil war. >> this is a debate. should isis be taken on in parallel with the syrian regime? we have now had a brutal civil war claiming over 200,000 lives. should it be done sequentially? no one wants to say it should be
done sequentially, but that is the american policy in effect. now, it is we need to take on isis and then we will deal with assad. if that means giving him a pass, let the russians pursue some diplomacy, that is in effect what has been happening. what has happened in the last 48 hours will only intensify that. the sense that isis must be taken on quickly and urgently, and then we will turn our attention to assad. the two cannot be taken on simultaneously. >> thank you so much for joining us. >> thank you for having us. ♪ >> reggie love is here. he got a job working for then senator obama in 2005.
he became the president's special assistant and personal aide. they developed a personal relationship. he tells the story working with the president in a new book called "power forward." i am pleased to have him at this table. good to see you. >> thank you for having me. >> you will go and see your coach k be vetted for 1000 wins as a basketball coach. >> he has put so much work into it. he does a great job developing young basketball players into productive men.
you look at the proteges he has out there. such good guys. they are such a good -- the impact he has on young men at such a young age is a big deal in terms of growth. >> what impact did he have on you? >> there are so many. the biggest are, i write about this in my book, that the little plays matter. we go through life thinking everything is going to be a home run or a three-point shot. a slamdunk. sometimes it is not always that. it is the guy who is diving on the ball after a loose ball.
the guy who sets a screen. the guy who is tirelessly defending. those little things. he acknowledges and encourages and inspires people to do those little things. >> i noticed he can relate to the biggest nba star, as he did during the olympics. kobe bryant and others. he can also relate to the walk-on. you went to duke to play football. >> yes, sir. >> and were better at football. >> i was a pretty good football recruit. i got offers from most schools in the country by the time i was a junior. i'm from north carolina and i
grew up loving the game of basketball. >> loved it more. >> as soon as football season was over. >> sometimes i didn't even wait for it to end. my coaches were not too happy about it. >> take the president, your parents. does anybody mean more to you than the coach? >> between my father, president obama, and the coach, i won the lottery in terms of mentors to have coming up. the coach had me at a stage in life at which i thought i was a little more invincible than i was. >> what did you think? >> you think you will be able to run and jump. there is nothing you think you cannot do. i told stories for the things i
had to learn. a sophomore at duke. the president gave me a little more perspective. when i was in college, i studied hard and got good grades. but i saw everything through the lens of sports. when i started working with him, traveling to iowa and new hampshire, sports was a good way to relate to people. but the things and the tipping points that helped me to understand how people were living and saving and trying to earn a decent living, how they wanted to have a little respect and dignity as they were looking to retire, the ideas around health care. some of the global conflicts and
partnerships we have. those are the things i got a firsthand chance to not only experience and see but learn about. >> you say the president is as competitive as it gets. >> president obama, even as a senator, the guy hates to lose. there were times when he was tired, campaigning. he was like, i don't want to do this. if anybody would say, do you want to win? he would be like, ok, let's do it. >> there was somebody, they would go into jack kennedy and say, richard nixon has been up for an hour. >> it is a motivator. >> let's talk about what you learned from him.
there is the famous story of when you lost the briefcase with the debate notes. >> it had all his paperwork. >> everything he needed was not there. tell me the story. there is an important lesson relevant to all of us. >> the story is, it is pretty simple. the bag did not make it onto the plane from florida. >> that was your job to make sure it did. >> car to plane, it should always be there. >> good thing you are not in charge of the nuclear bag. >> we are riding into columbia. our first stop. he turns back and looks at me
and says, where's my bag? i am thinking, what do i say? it is coming. he is like, why is it not here? i took full responsibility for it. i screwed up. i worked my butt to get it back and make sure nothing was missing and he did not go too long without it. he sat me down after we got to the first stop. he said, look, reggie. if you are not up for doing this job, then i will find someone else who can. if i cannot focus on running for president because i am worried about my bag or clothes -- >> i could give the speech. >> that was the last time that
ever happened. >> the important thing is, you said it was my fault. you said, i screwed up. it was supposed to be here and he did not get it. my responsibility. he was impressed by that. >> i think he was. >> he told you he was going to beat hillary early on. >> i think it was late summer. there was a moment in which he said to us, we are going to win this thing. there was an exchange with senator clinton on the tarmac. the conversation got heated. he was composed. he handled it and got back on the plane. was not frazzled.
>> people have taken note of and asked why, there's a kind of aloofness and detachment. why? >> people have written that. there's a lot of stuff behind it. some is the comparison to bill clinton. bill clinton was so amazing at making people feel like they were the only person in the room. i tell people all the time that the president is very different than bill clinton. the president has two small children. i guess they are not small, they are actually pretty big. >> the tallest one -- the oldest one. >> she is like 5'10" or 5'11". he is about 6'1".
what was really important to him, he wanted to have normalcy for the girls. i think it was important for him to be home for dinner as much as he could if he was not traveling. if he was in d.c., he would eat dinner with his family every day. >> what time? >> 6:30. >> and then he does what at night? >> he reads a lot. the guy reads everything. it is amazing how much information one person can consume. i think the ipad has made it even easier. >> he watches almost no television except sports. >> i think he watched a couple of shows. he watches like "game of thrones" and "mad men." he was well-versed in basketball, baseball. >> that was a bond between you.
you describe your job as, you were his dj. you filled up his playlist. what did you put on his ipod? >> he would say, i think the first time he had met jay-z. he said, can you give me five of his best songs? i put a couple of them on. it was a hard job for me because i think only five, and i think he enjoyed it. it diversified into some other hip-hop, other genres. >> does he think he is al green? >> i don't think he thinks he can sing like him but maybe he can dance like him.
>> his kindle. making sure he had books. his travel agent, that was not hard? air force one is waiting. >> we did not always have air force one. >> this was during the campaign. his valet. he wore the same suit? >> he likes the blue suit but sometimes he changes it up now and then. white shirt. i was always amazed at how many white shirts. they would never stop. there was a whole thing of white shirts. i saw him on tv the other night for the super bowl. he had a great plaid shirt. but he did have a uniform for a while. >> you know what al hunt told me
about you? >> they can be true. what did mr. hunt say? >> you should meet reggie love. he has the greatest life because of the job and access. and everywhere he goes, there are young women, single, who love him. just love him. he has this magnetic impact. >> i can think of some young women who do not love me. >> i'm just telling you what hunt told me. >> i appreciate those kind words. my mom always told me, reggie, you are only 32 years old but you have lived like multiple lives. a couple of lifetimes. >> did you ever ask yourself? they said this in world war ii the raf pilots who had saved london. their lives will never be as exciting as when they saved a
country. do you ever have a sense, it will never be that exciting? or do you say, that was just a learning experience? i was part of the process. >> i will definitely say -- i think there will always be challenges that are going to be interesting for me and anyone to go on to look to take on as they progress in life. i think the relationships, especially for me. i was very malleable when i moved to d.c., i was 23. i didn't know anything about anything. those relationships and the bond with those people will never be replaced. i will never have that kind of
relationship. >> because of the significance and nature of power. and pressure? >> exactly. >> you are living in a fishbowl. >> because of that, i am lucky. i think there will be other things out there that will be impactful. it will not be similar to those points in time. >> why did you leave when you did? >> i don't know if i clearly explained this in the book. i started getting my mba at the university of pennsylvania during the third year, the beginning of the third-year of his first term. >> why would you do that? why would you think you have to get an mba? you are learning more than anybody in a business school could learn. >> i agree with you 100%. >> you are seeing decision-making and power and
political intrigue. how people persuade others. leadership. all these things. they cannot teach. and you leave it. >> a lot of people struggle with this when they start at an organization at a young age. me going to get an mba did two things. i learned a significant amount about business, finance, business development, and business policy. i am very appreciative of that. i think when you start someplace when you're 23, the people you are with and you work with, even when you become 30, they still see you as the same 23-year-old. that they met 10 years ago. i think it was a good way to go
out and have some personal growth. for people to say, reggie is not the same 23-year-old kid. >> when was the last time you saw him? >> i saw the president probably in december. on a golf course. >> you are playing with him? >> i was playing in the foursome behind him. >> what are you doing next? >> other than writing this, i have to thank allison glock who helped with the process. other than that, i am a partner in a financial holding company. we look to find companies that have limited access and presence in markets we have know-how in. we look to acquire them and grow them in the u.s.
hopefully we are creating jobs. that is the endgame. >> there is also the sense of him -- what is it about, that you saw firsthand, with the remarkable proximity, that you don't think after all this time, we understand about barack obama. >> i was speaking to someone about this earlier today. it blew my mind when i really -- i kind of wish i had written about it in the book but i did not. there were times, he is like a guy -- i remember him saying this early on. he said, i came to washington because i want to figure out how to do the best thing i can for the american people. if that results in me not getting elected, fine. he really wants to help people.
when we were in iowa and new hampshire, he would run across people who were down and out on their luck. at a roundtable. or event. anything from a broken down car to issues paying bills, medical expenses. he would say, reggie, why don't you call my accountant and have them send a cashiers check? this is early on, before he even knew he was going to be president. he wanted to make a difference in people's lives. >> i thought you might say the will to overcome insurmountable odds. in 2003, there were not many people who thought he would be the president. >> or knew who he was.
it is a testament to his work ethic and his ability to inspire people. he and coach k have the ability to get people to buy into something bigger than them. work and invest together to do something unique and powerful. everybody does not know how to do that. it is an amazing quality to have. >> great to see you. >> thank you for having me. it was fun. >> the book is called "power forward." ♪
me." great to see both of you. why did you decide to put this story in a book? >> people know bob as a brilliant prosecutor. he has been called the d.a. of the world. but he has been seen as a reserved, stiff person. i wanted him to go down in history as a well-rounded person. do a portrait in all of his
complexity that the people did not know. at the same time, i wanted to save my marriage. >> how does this save your marriage? >> i did not want to be so honest -- >> you drew a line. >> so many foibles revealed, it would affect my marriage. my marriage was more important than the book. >> you are 50 something, 53? >> 56. >> she was 26. what attracted you to her? >> the first time i met her, she was doing a piece on contributions to the nixon campaign. >> he was the finance chairman of the committee to reelect. >> the secretary of commerce later. she came in. i thought she was wearing an indian rug. it turned out it was much more
sophisticated. she caught my attention. i had first refused to be interviewed by her. i relented. she asked me a lot of good questions. she was incredibly persistent, which women reporters in those days were not. >> that has certainly changed. >> i said this is either the dumbest reporter or smartest. after i read the piece, she was the smartest. >> your friends were not thrilled about this when you started dating. >> it was a little bit like the pope asking -- that was the shock. among all his extended family and my radical friends who dropped me.
>> you had written and gotten to know some of the members of the most radical organizations in the 1960's. >> i was pretty much part of that world. >> you thought of yourself as at one with them in many of their objectives. then here's a guy from one of the best-known families in america. >> it was an oxymoron. he was dedicated to upholding the law. i was dedicated to breaking it. but he had a magnificent forehead. he was so smart, so interesting. but i thought, i'm not going to see him again. >> there is a story of a dinner party.
>> he was my source. he finally got the nerve to ask me out on a date. he said, we are going to arthur schlesinger's house for a party. they looked at me like i was homeless. jackie kennedy came in. the society ladies dropped their jaws. just were smiling. i looked at bob. he was smiling, too. but not at jackie, at me. >> so you knew.
>> there was, my god. have i misinterpreted this one. >> you write to him, every day you are making history while i am making nothing. >> that's good. >> it was true. my friends dropped me. his extended family told him to see a psychiatrist. they would not speak to him. we were like romeo and juliet. there was just only us. just the two of us.
>> in other words, you had to depend on each other. >> one of the reviewers said her life was dedicated to the service of her husband. if anything, she appears more worshipful than ever. "timeless" is a long love letter to him. >> that is not true. about worshiping my husband. it is about a relationship between two people who have -- >> from very different places. different ages. >> who have serious careers. it is how we interacted. how we were reconciled to certain differences.
the love letter bit, as kind as that might be from a reviewer, is just not the book. >> here is what one critic says. more than goes with the territory of writing a book, if you write a memoir. it is called, tmi. too much information. you gave us too many facts. we didn't want to know everything you told us. >> i walked into a book club group. one of the first things somebody said was, your characters were too real. i didn't want them that real. so, you know, tmi. i don't know what that means. i just sat down and wrote the book and swallowed my pride. swallowed bob's pride. it came out. i am sorry if there is too much information. then just don't read it.
>> you also were second district u.s. attorney, he was u.s. attorney for the second district. >> southern district. >> was that less interesting than manhattan da? you are appointed by president kennedy? >> reappointed by president johnson. the seven district handled 1000 cases a year. the district attorney handled over 100,000. it was like a boutique in a supermarket. the client in most of the southern district cases was the u.s. it was a fascinating job. you had a boss, the attorney general's office.
you can not testify without their permission. the da's office, you are closer to the victims of crime. you had no boss except the voters. >> that job, for the u.s. attorney. it was held by rudy giuliani? >> yes. >> it was held now by a person who announced remarkable prosecution. are you more of a prosecutor than a defense attorney? are you more interested in taking a power of the law and makeing sure that people who violate it --
>> i want to make sure the law is observed. i have been working now for the last year on a death penalty case in alabama where the man has been on death row for 27 years. he is absolutely innocent. the people in alabama, the prosecutor, did not turn over grand jury minutes, police interviews, in violation of brady vs maryland. i'm am trying to get this guy a new trial. >> you like that. >> i want to see justice done. wherever the scales fall. >> back to the difference between the district and the manhattan da, my guess is you like to manhattan da more. your job was determined by the voters. it was an elective office. it is closer to the street. >> right. you deal with real victims of crime, individuals. in the district, you are dealing
with government victims. they are both great jobs. >> what was relationship to bernie getz? >> i prosecuted him and that was unpopular. >> tell us who he was. >> he went on a subway train and shot four people. when we first presented the grand jury, we did not get an indictment. i had to re-present it. a second shot at an indictment. the defense said, you cannot re-present. the judge agreed. dismissed the indictment. i took an appeal. we prevailed. we did not convict him of attempted murder. they only convicted him of possession of a gun. he was a folk hero at that point.
>> because the four young men were african-american. he said he thought he was going to be robbed. they said they were just panhandling him. the crime was very high. people thought, more power to him to stop this. >> the most interesting one was -- you believe if there had been more discovery, you might have found some evidence linking him to people involved in 9/11. >> i don't think there's any question of that. the pd turned over all the records in the apartment to the fbi. they held onto them.
they had nobody who could translate them. no arabic speaking people. someone from my staff translated them. there were pictures of the world trade center, and grand central station. monuments which must be destroyed. if we had had that earlier and followed up on it, we might have stopped 9/11. the other big mistake the government made, we had air marshals on all the planes. and then for a couple of years they took them off. there could have been air marshals on those planes, and 9/11 might not have occurred. >> what is your favorite case? >> i do not have a favorite case. when i told my people on my staff is every case is important for the victim. there is a such thing as an unimportant case.
the cases i thought were most interesting were where we push the envelope. like pursuing bcci in the grand caymans. >> tell me what you thought about strauss case. >> the victim told three different stories. when a prosecutor puts the victim on the stand, you are asking for the truth. if you don't know what story she is going to tell, you can't vouch for her truthfulness. i thought they were right in dismissing the charges. >> should they have brought it the way they did? should they have pulled him off the plane? was he a candidate to flee
because he was a head of the imf? >> if i was the da, i would have hoped he had fled because it was a pain in the neck. i don't know all the facts but i think in retrospect it was a mistake. you make them put up the bail. if they flee, you say god bless them. you know they are not going to come back and commit that crime in the country. the amount of resources that go into a case like that is huge and distract. >> do you think they handled that right? >> i do. >> remind us about your father. it is almost like letters in the attic.
>> one day, i was helping to cleanout my father's things which were a mess. he was 80 years old. i lifted out my mother's old nightgown. there was a nazi uniform. i took it out. i looked at it, and i asked what it was? he said, it was something my mother was supposed to get rid of. i made him tell me what he had done that he had to wear the uniform for. it unfolded very quickly he had been a spy during world war ii. he had been deep undercover.
he had been an assassin of nazi officers. all of which blew my mind. my father and i had been somewhat estranged. he never wanted anyone to ask him what he had done in the warfare if he had brought a oath of silence. that resurrected our relationship we had when i was a child and he was the most wonderful man in the world who taught me everything. we had that for the last few years of his life. we had a reconciliation. falling in love with each other all over again. >> he lost some of the inhibition to tell you everything? >> yes. i think there was a time when he forgot he was supposed to forget. he forgot he had taken an oath of silence. he had liberated a holocaust
camp. one of the first one, the first one discovered by the allies. he testified about that. but he never would talk about it. he never was the same because of it. right up until he told me about it, he thought he had taken an oath of silence never to speak about it because that is what they told soldiers right after the war. when they discovered these camps. >> how will did you know jack kennedy? >> pretty well. i was not one of his intimates. i knew him from sailing on cape cod. i knew him in the senate and supported him when he ran. >> you were on a destroyer and world war ii. destroyers that were torpedoed. how did you survive?
>> luck. you had to be lucky. the second destroyer i was on was sunk. taking a convoy in support of the anzio landings in italy. and then i went to a new destroyer in time for iwo jima and okinawa. on april 6, 1945. we caught a torpedo through the bow. we know it was a torpedo. it did not detonate. we found the propeller inside the ship. we were very lucky because it would've blown the bow off the ship. we tried to reach our squadron commander to tell them, we were on picket station 15 nearest
japan. north of iwo jima. the task force commander, kelly turner, came on. he said, don't wait to be relieved. proceed at best possible speed to base. there were 800 planes coming in. the biggest attack of the pacific war. >> the invasion of iwo jima. >> the ship that relieved us got clobbered. we were doubly lucky. >> bob had to watch one by one all of his men. he was executive officer. drown. he gave his life jacket away. but he had to watch them go down into the sea. that to me is courage.
>> live from pier three in san francisco, welcome to "bloomberg west." we focus on innovation technology, and a future of business. i'm cory johnson. we are going to get a check of your top headlines. angela merkel and francois hollande have left moscow after emergency talks with president vladimir putin. they try to diffuse the fighting in eastern ukraine. the talks were constructive but there is no resolution. the leaders will firm up a new proposal with input from russia over the weekend. the drop comes after u.s. added 257,000 jobs in january, capping th